Uganda Minister held over theft of 14,500 metal roof sheets

By Online Desk |  8 months ago | international

A Ugandan cabinet minister is to spend Easter in jail after being charged over a scandal involving the theft of thousands of metal roofing sheets.

They were intended for vulnerable communities in the north-eastern Karamoja region.

Mary Goretti Kitutu Kimono, the minister for the region, pleaded not guilty in court but was denied bail.

At least 10 other senior government figures are alleged to have received some of the stolen corrugated iron.

These include the vice-president, the prime minister, the parliamentary Speaker and other ministers, according to the inspector general of government.

Some of them told a parliamentary committee investigating the corruption scandal, involving 14,500 missing iron sheets, that they had not asked for them.

The prime minister has apologised and urged other officials to return the sheets. Speaker Anita Among told the house that she had returned the ones she had received.

One minister was recently forced to remove some from the roof of his goat shed, local media reported.

Karamoja has for decades faced persistent droughts and flooding when it rains, leaving many in the semi-arid north-eastern region dependent on aid.